My Palms were sweaty, weak arms were heavy, no vomit on my t-shirt already, I didn’t have Mom’s spaghetti. I’m nervous already, but on the surface I look calm and ready, deep down thinkin’ why am I here, swingin’ …
I was completely calm and relaxed about getting onto a big swing till the day before. After all the swing is always the best thing in the national park, right? What could possibly be better than swinging on the world’s largest swing? Did you know that it has a drop of 70 metres and makes an arc of 300 metres? Did you?
I woke up the morning of the swing with a crazy cold sore and knew that I am obviously more stressed out about the swing than I was allowing my conscious mind to accept. We arrived early to the AJ Hackett shop in Queenstown and signed our lives away.
You get weighed and lovingly have your weight written with a fat marker pen on your hand.
We wait about 10 minutes for our bus to arrive and everybody eagerly gets up with excitement to head on our 30 minute drive to the Nevis Bungy & Nevis Swing site. On arrival you get weighed again in case you stress ate on the way up and gained a few pounds. 😉 You get strapped up and sent out to face your fears.
We head straight out and I’m faced with what I believed would have been the most challenging task. Crossing the swingy bridge to get to the platform. I took a deep breath looked straight ahead and walked at a steady pace, pausing briefly for the photographic evidence. As we reach the swing platform another couple had just finished their swing and were getting back onto the platform.
So we were up next, no waiting and no time to chicken out. It was do or die time. With shaking legs I walked out onto the platform trying to concentrate on the instructions given by the staff. All I can remember is thinking how badly I did not want to go closer to the edge.
After they strap us in and do their safety checks they ask us to sit down on the swings while we get hoisted off the edge of the platform. The release of the swing is delayed whilst they tell you to look to the left, right and up to take photos. Again, I am too preoccupied by what I’m about to do to be able to concentrate and follow instructions.
I hook my arm around my husband’s arm, take a deep breath, shake my head ‘no, I don’t want a countdown’ and feel my stomach rising into my throat as we plummet 70 meters into the canyon below. It is only once the swing part of the free fall began that the sensation of pure bliss kicked in. That’s when all the trauma I went through became worthwhile.
Once the swinging stops, you get hoisted back up the 70 meters to the platform.
I thought all the anxiety about the swing was over but as we got higher and higher the fear crept in again and by the time we got close to the platform I was dying to get my feet onto something solid.
So, if you ask me. Was the swing amazing? My answer would be ‘YES’. If you ask me, would I do it again? My answer is a resounding ‘NO’.
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